"YOUR PHOTOGRAPHS ARE AS DAZZLING AS YOUR SUBJECTS"

Friday, November 22, 2013

AUSTRALIA SPIES ON INDONESIAN LEADERS; IT GETS PERSONAL FOR PRESIDENT YUDHOYONO

LISTEN UP, AUSTRALIA! 



Indonesian President 
Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono 

BUT NOT TO MY WIFE'S PHONE 


First Lady Ani Yudhoyono 
(Kristiani Herawati) 

OR MINE, OR MY GOVERNMENT'S 

Indonesian-Australian cooperation suspended 

Some of the reporting here and here and here 

ANALYSIS here 

Monday, November 18, 2013

THE PHILIPPINE ISLANDS ARE DEVASTATED BY TYPHOON HAIYUAN; PRESIDENT AQUINO IS TEMPTED "TO DESPAIR"

THE TOLL KEEPS RISING 


PHILIPPINES PRESIDENT 
BENIGNO S. AQUINO III 
bows his head as leaders and their spouses gather for a group photograph at the APEC Summit on Bali, Indonesia, October 2013  

Today it is reported that nearly four thousand people were killed when Typhoon Haiyan hit the central Philippines, and that the estimate of people "displaced by the catastrophe" was now up to  four million. 

Sunday, November 3, 2013

ART IN RELIGION (BALI, INDONESIA)

UNFINISHED 
RELIGIOUS OBJECTS 
BY THE ROADSIDE 


WORK IN PROGRESS 
BALI, INDONESIA 

Saturday, November 2, 2013

SHOPPING FOR A CELL PHONE ON BALI

CELL PHONE SHOPPING 


FAMILY CHECKS OUT 
ROADSIDE STALL 
BALI, INDONESIA 

Friday, November 1, 2013

BECAUSE WE CAN? OBAMA AND THE NSA

SPYING FOR 
OBAMA? 


STATUE OF THE BOY 
"BARRY" BARACK OBAMA 
JAKARTA, INDONESIA 

On his left hand a butterfly; above his head, a surveillance camera.   

To be continued 

Monday, October 28, 2013

CAR CRASH BELOW MAO'S PORTRAIT FACING TIANANMEN SQUARE, BEIJING

VEHICLE CRASHES THROUGH 
SECURITY IN FRONT OF 
THE FORBIDDEN CITY; 
THERE ARE CASUALTIES 

TIANANMEN SQUARE AND THE FORBIDDEN CITY 
AT NIGHT, DRESSED UP FOR THE 18TH CONGRESS 
OF THE COMMUNIST PARTY OF CHINA 
BEIJING, October 2012 

Early reporting of the incident here and here
a photograph of the vehicle on fire can be found here 

Monday, October 7, 2013

INDONESIA HANDS OVER APEC HOSTING TO CHINA

THE CHANGING OF 
THE GUARD OF APEC 


SYMBOLIZING THE HANDOVER FROM 
INDONESIA AS HOST (2013) 
TO CHINA (2014) 

From the Bali APEC Gala 
Depicted: Presidents Xi Jinping of China (l.) and 
Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono of Indonesia (center) 
Barong (r.); Rangda (lower right) 

More on the Bali APEC here  
More on Indonesia here 

CHINA AT THE BALI APEC SUMMIT

BALI WELCOMING 
FOR CHI NA 


CHINESE PRESIDENT XI JINPING 
AND HIS WIFE PENG LIYUAN 
ARE WELCOMED TO THE BALI 
2013 APEC SUMMIT GALA 

With the U.S. President Barack Obama a no-show, Chinese President Xi Jinping is center stage at the 2013 APEC (Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation) Summit in Nusa Dua, Bali, Indonesia. 

Sunday, September 29, 2013

LECH WAŁĘSA TURNS SEVENTY

LECH WAŁĘSA 
b. September 9, 1943 


THE FUTURE PRESIDENT 
OF POLAND (1990-1995
AS LEADER OF SOLIDARITY 
Plotting Strategy 
Warsaw, Summer 1981 
Imprisoned under Martial Law, December 1981 
1983 Nobel Peace Prize winner 

Now the subject of a new film by Andrzej Wajda, "Wałęsa: Man of Hope," meant to re-burnish Walesa's name and to introduce him to a new, younger audience (see here and here).  

Thursday, September 19, 2013

MICHAEL BARONE TURNS SIXTY-NINE

MICHAEL BARONE 
b. September 19, 1944 

THE ORIGINAL AUTHORS OF 
THE ALMANAC OF AMERICAN POLITICS 
(l. to r.)  GRANT UJIFUSA
DOUGLAS MATTHEWS
MICHAEL BARONE 

Published in WOMEN'S WEAR DAILY, March 14, 1972, p. 14 

One upon a time Michael Barone worked for George McGovern; today he is a commentator for various conservative outlets; two of the relevant websites are here (with links to some of his columns) and here (with a contemporary photograph). 

Sunday, September 15, 2013

LARRY SUMMERS GIVES UP ON THE FED

LAWRENCE SUMMERS 
DECLINES -- 
BEFORE HE IS 
NOMINATED 


LARRY SUMMERS 
SENDS A LETTER TO 
PRESIDENT OBAMA ... 

... declining to be nominated to chair the Federal Reserve Board. 

President Obama accepted. 

Will the President now nominate "Mr. Yellen" (as he called Janet Yellen, the vice-chair of the Fed, in a news conference)? 

More Summers here and here  

Thursday, September 12, 2013

PUTIN ADDRESSES AMERICA

VLADIMIR PUTIN 
HOLDS FORTH 
ON SYRIA -- AND 
ON AMERICA 


RUSSIAN PRESIDENT PUTIN CENTER STAGE AT THE 2012 APEC SUMMIT IN VLADIVOSTOK, RUSSIA; PRESIDENT OBAMA WAS A NO-SHOW 

Today Vladimir Putin made a big splash with an op-ed piece in the New York Times entitled "A Plea for Caution from Russia." 

Some quotations that speak for themselves, if perhaps not always in the way the author intended: 
"We are not protecting the Syrian government, but international law." 
"It is alarming that military intervention in internal conflicts in foreign countries has become commonplace for the United States." 
"Millions around the world increasingly see America [or --] not as a model of democracy but as relying solely on brute force, cobbling coalitions together under the slogan 'you’re either with us or against us.'" 
"We must stop using the language of force and return to the path of civilized diplomatic and political settlement." 
"My working and personal relationship with President Obama is marked by growing trust." 
"It is extremely dangerous to encourage people to see themselves as exceptional, whatever the motivation." 
In three-and-a-half weeks Vladimir Putin and Barack Obama are both due to be attending another multilateral summit, this one on Bali, Indonesia, with nineteen other leaders of the Asia-Pacific (APEC) economies. The Russian and American presidents will have another opportunity to deal with Syria directly, and to try out their "growing trust." 

President Obama skipped last year's summit, held in Vladivostok, Russia (see above); President Putin had skipped Obama's first G-8 summit, held at Camp David supposedly for the Russian leader's convenience. Obama ostentatiously called off a Moscow meeting with Putin before the recent G-20 summit, and then ended up talking to him in St. Petersburg instead. Both of them have tossed rather un-presidential zingers at one another. 

Next? Watch this space. 

Monday, September 9, 2013

CHAIRMAN MAO GONE THIRTY-SEVEN YEARS TODAY

MAO ZEDONG 
December 26, 1893-September 9, 1976 

THE BODY MOVED HERE 


THE MAUSOLEUM 
at the southern end of Tiananmen Square 

THE ICONIC PORTRAIT HERE 


at the Gate of Heavenly Peace 

MEANWHILE
The debate goes on 


What is the balance on 
Mao's legacy? 

A recent take reviewed here  

Sunday, September 8, 2013

GERALD R. FORD PARDONS RICHARD M. NIXON, THIRTY-NINE YEARS AGO TODAY; IS NOT ELECTED PRESIDENT

THE PARDON THAT KEPT 
RICHARD M. NIXON 
OUT OF PRISON 
AND 
GERALD R. FORD 
OUT OF AN ELECTED 
PRESIDENCY 
September 8, 1974 

Hear it here  

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

NOW THAT COLLEGE IS BACK IN SESSION AGAIN ... A LOOK BACK TO WHEN CO-ED LIVING WAS NEW

"THE NEW CAMPUS REBELS: 
WOMEN" 


SHARING A BATHROOM AT HARVARD 
Nearly Forty Years Ago 

Published in the December 10, 1973, 
issue of NEWSWEEK (p. 120) 

To be continued 

Monday, September 2, 2013

SEPTEMBER 2nd HAS BEEN A MEMORABLE DAY FOR GEORGE BUSH

SEVERAL SEPTEMBER 
SECONDS IN THE 
CALENDAR OF 
GEORGE BUSH'S LIFE 

Vice-President George Bush Photographed in 
His Old Executive Office Building Office 
Being Tough on Deregulation 

Published in the March 9, 1981, issue of BUSINESS WEEK (p. 64)   

"As one of his first official acts, President Reagan created a Presidential task force on regulatory relief and named Vice-President George Bush to head it." Key quote from the Vice-President: "We must get this country back to work." 

A few memorable September 2nd events in the life of George Bush, two from World War II, and one from the Cold War: 

September 2, 1944:  "Navy pilot George H.W. Bush was shot down by Japanese forces as he completed a bombing run over the Bonin Islands." (New York Times

September 2, 1945:  "On Sept. 2, 1945, Japan formally surrendered in ceremonies aboard the USS Missouri, ending World War II."  (New York Times

September 2, 1991: "The Bush administration officially recognized the three Baltic states [which had been part of the Soviet Union: Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania] on September 2, 1991." (George Bush Library) [p.1] 

And then of course there is this September 2 in the life of the other George Bush: 

September 2, 2005: "President George W. Bush told Michael Brown, head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, 'Brownie, you're doing a heck of a job" during a tour of Hurricane Katrina damage in Alabama.'" (New York Times

Sunday, September 1, 2013

ANN RICHARDS WOULD HAVE BEEN EIGHTY TODAY

ANN W. RICHARDS 
September 1, 1933-September 13, 2006 


DELIVERING THE FAMOUS KEYNOTE ADDRESS 
At the 1988 Democratic National Convention 
Atlanta, Georgia 
Here as Texas State Treasurer 
Later GOVERNOR of TEXAS (1991-1995) 
Defeated for re-election by GEORGE W. BUSH 

The transcript of the keynote address is here
The Houston Chronicle obituary is here
an appreciation by Molly Ivins is here
The late Governor is the subject of a current play, "Ann," here 

Friday, August 30, 2013

SOLIDARITY-TO-BE WINS ITS STRIKE, THIRTY-THREE YEARS AGO

SOLIDARNOŚĆ 
IS BEING BORN 
GDANSK, POLAND 
August 30, 1980 


"LET POLAND BE POLAND" 
Solidarity Poster 
Summer 1981 

The story is here 

More Poland, here 

TIMOTHY JOHNSON -- "DR. TIM" -- IN THE EARLY DAYS IN BOSTON

"HOUSE CALL"


DR. TIMOTHY JOHNSON ANSWERS 
VIEWERS' HEALTH CARE QUESTIONS 
WITH THE AID OF "DIRTY HARRY" 
THE MANNEQUIN 
WCVB-TV, Boston, Massachusett

Published in NEWSWEEK 
October 8, 1973, p. 75 

A retrospective on Dr. Johnson's life and work here 

Thursday, August 29, 2013

NIGHT AND THE COLORS OF THE RIVER

NIGHT LIGHTS 
AND NIGHT COLORS 
ON THE RIVER HAN 


CONRAD SEOUL HOTEL AND THE 
INTERNATIONAL FINANCE CENTER (IFC) 
SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA 

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Thursday, August 22, 2013

WATCHING THAT FACE: BO XILAI SPEAKS UP IN COURT

FIRST DAY OF THE 
TRIAL OF FORMER 
CCP POLITBURO MEMBER 
BO XILAI 
August 22, 2013 


BO XILAI CHAIRING 
THE LIAONING PROVINCE DELEGATION 
TO THE 16TH PARTY CONGRESS
Beijing, November 2002 

Today was finally the first day of the deposed Politburo member's trial. When I wrote "Watch This Face" three years ago (here), was there anyone who could have imagined these developments? His political life gone, the prospect of legal retribution for "corruption" looming, towered over by two apparently especially chosen extra-tall guards, Bo Xilai, finally given a chance to speak at least semi-publicly (there are dispatches from the court but no live or total video), was indeed speaking up for himself and contesting the prosecution case -- not going softly into the history books -- if he could help it.

It is thought that there will likely be one more day of the trial, and that the outcome is not likely to be in doubt. 

Some background and ongoing coverage, including grab shots from the courtroom, can be found here and here and here and here.   

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

THE LAST DAY OF THE AUGUST 1991 SOVIET COUP

THE RUSSIA DELEGATION 
BRINGS MIKHAIL GORBACHEV 
HOME TO MOSCOW 
THE SOVIET DELEGATION 
IS ACED OUT 




Russia Vice-President ALEKSANDR RUTSKOI 
(center left, with dark hair and moustache) and 
 Russian Prime Minister IVAN SILAYEV 
(center right, with white hair
at the Congress of People's Deputies of 
the Russian Soviet Federated Socialist Republic 
July 1991 

On Wednesday, August 21, 1991, a delegation of Russian leaders including Vice-President Aleksandr Rutskoi and Prime Minister Ivan Silayev flew to Foros in the Crimea, where Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev was said to have been held against his will since Sunday, August 18th.  A delegation of Soviet leaders flew in a separate plane.  Gorbachev rejected them as implicated in the coup against him, and flew back to Moscow with the Russian delegation instead.  His arrival in the early hours of August 22nd definitively ended the coup, but Gorbachev was soon to find he had stepped back into a very different political world. 

More to come in  RUSSIA REDUX 

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

LARRY KUDLOW IS SIXTY-SIX

LAWRENCE KUDLOW 
b. August 20, 1947 


Published in the April 27, 1981, issue of 
BUSINESS WEEK, p. 12 
in the Economic Diary for Apr. 6-Apr. 10 
William Wolman, Editor 

Investors, it seems, "do not believe the
[Reagan] Administration's forecast of rapid economic growth and lower inflation. One problem may be the forecast's glaring internal inconsistency.  
     "This inconsistency was admitted frankly today by Lawrence A. Kudlow, chief economist of the Office of Management and Budget...." 

Today Larry Kudlow is an author, a syndicated columnist, and the host of CNBC's "Kudlow & Company"; his website is here

WHY THE AUGUST COUP? THE UNION TREATY WAS SUPPOSED TO HAVE BEEN SIGNED TWENTY-TWO YEARS AGO TODAY

DAY THREE OF 
THE 1991 AUGUST COUP 
August 20, 1991 


NURSULTAN NAZARBAYEV 
President of Kazakhstan 
Photographed in 1997 
In office in 1991, and still in office today 


From RUSSIA REDUX, Chapter Eight: 

Gorbachev has described the coup plotters "as 'egotistical careerists' who decided to act against him when it became clear that there would be no place for them in the new order."  The new order was to be brought into being by the signing of the Union Treaty on August 20, 1991; it "would have reshaped the Soviet Union as a loose confederation of sovereign states and resulted in a major government shake-up."  So it was not just some abstract concerns about intergovernmental structures which drove the conspirators, according to their patron, but the detailed knowledge about kto kogo -- who was going to do what to whom. 

For Gorbachev was convinced, afterwards, that his conversations with the top republican leaders at Novo-Ogarëvo were bugged, and what they contained was dynamite.  Gorbachev has been releasing this dynamite in pieces.  In an early version he revealed that: 

Yeltsin, Nazarbayev, and I already had an understanding that once the Union Treaty had been signed, and without waiting for the new constitution, we would move toward new organs of power and new elections.  We were thinking in terms of agreeing this [sic] with other republic leaders too.  Thus, new people would have come to the fore. 

Yeltsin of Russia, Nazarbayev of Kazakhstan, and Gorbachev of the Soviet Union, had reached an understanding. 

And so some of the "old people," people Gorbachev had appointed,  organized the coup -- the GKChPists, including Vladimir Kryuchkov (the KGB) and Dmitry Yazov (Ministry of Defense) and Boris Pugo (Ministry of the Interior).  

But they did not seize Boris Yeltsin.